Waze - App of the week # 21

Waze is a free app that has it all when it comes to maps, traffic and navigation. It is a real-time traffic map and at the same time, a community app. It gives you the best route to your destination, the cheapest gas station along your route, and you get last minute info about accidents, police, hazards and any other events, shared by other users. You can actively report all these traffic events yourself. With this app, you can easily coordinate with friends and colleagues on the road (if they all have the app installed) and find out useful information from them. Imagine if you could find out from a neighbor who left home 15 minutes before you, about a traffic jam that’s on the road you are about to take. Now, this is possible with Waze, and which is more, the app will also give you the best alternative route, as that you can get at work on time. How does Waze work Simply download Waze on your Smartphone. You’ll get an apparently ordinary map, which is actually anything but ordinary. Waze’s map is fully dynamic, created and constantly updated as users travel around with the application opened on their phone. Tap in your destination address and you’re ready to go. GPS points, both yours and other users, are used to update the map automatically, as well to detect and display traffic jams in real time. To contribute with data, all the users need to do is to drive. If someone is stuck in traffic, a red line will form behind him, and you and other users will be able to see it too. If you come across a construction road, an accident, or any other incident, you can inform other users as soon as it happens. You can share the news by sending a report with just a few easy clicks. You can also take a photo of what you encountered on the road or Chit Chat with other users. However, for your safety, typing is disabled when your car is in motion. The app is all about contributing to, and benefiting from, the ‘common goods’ of the road, so the more the drivers get involved in the map updating, more complex Waze’s map will be. If you want to get a more active role, there are some ways in which you can contribute. Sometimes, you can encounter errors on the map. If you take the time to report them, they might be fixed later by other members of the Waze community. Or, if you have the time and patience, you can update yourself the map at www.waze.com, the next time you’re in front of a computer. If you find yourself driving on a road that doesn’t appear at all on the map, you can record the road yourself, by clicking the record road button.

The only cons to this app are that you have to be connected to the internet all the time while using Waze and with the latest version of the app, it seems that the battery life drains quite quickly.

I don’t drive in London, so I’m not exactly the public for this app. But I heard so much about Waze from my boyfriend that I took interest in it and had to find out more about this app. This is from far his favorite Sat Nav app ever, and trust me, he’d tried a lot of them before coming across Waze.

May 07, 2014